Philippines to continue AstraZeneca vaccinations amid suspensions in Europe

March 12, 2021 - 9:59 AM
Duterte with AstraZeneca
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shows a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by British-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca following the ceremonial turnover of the first shipment of the vaccine from World Health Organization Representative in the Philippines Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe at the Bulwagang Kalayaan in Villamor Air Base, Pasay City on March 4, 2021. (Presidential Photo/Alfred Frias)

MANILA — Philippine health authorities said on Friday they saw no reason to halt using the AstraZeneca vaccine in the country despite suspension of inoculations in Denmark, Norway and Iceland due to reports of blood clots.

“At present, the Department of Health and the Food and Drug Administration emphasize that there is no indication for the Philippines to stop rollout of AstraZeneca vaccines,” the health ministry and the country’s food and drug administration said in a joint statement, adding that benefits outweigh the risks.

The Philippines has so far received 525,600 doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine through the COVAX facility. —Reporting by Neil Jerome Morales Editing by Ed Davies